Back in March, I used Wal-mart as a good example of a non-manufacturing company creating dark matter. At the time, I wrote that Wal-mart was buying up stores overseas and applying "the business knowhow which made Wal-mart such a powerful and productive competitor in the U.S." These exports of business know-how would not show up in the international accounts as an investment, but they would bump up future profits.
Now, Wal-mart has sold its German stores, and its Japan stores don't look so hot either. Not much dark matter there..
Brad Setser nicely says:
I won’t gloat too much though
Go ahead and gloat, Brad. That's a good point for your view of the world, since I'd consider Wal-mart, along with Dell and a few other companies, one of the main leaders in supply chain management. And supply chain management has to be one of the main sources of dark matter, in my analysis.
Oh. well. At least my wife's knee is getting better after the operation.